Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Abuelita Joshua's Blackened Shrimp and Sausage Po'Boys.

Here in Nacogdoches there's a restaurant I frequent, Delacroix's.  It's a solid Soul/Cajun seafood joint that has some of the best damned fried chicken I've ever had.  After eating there with much frequency over the past two years and getting to know the people who work there and all that good stuff I figured I could throw them a curve ball and they'd make it.

My curve ball was a variation on the standard po'boy.  The po'boy normally features battered and fried seafood on a delicious roll, or traditionally roast beef on a delicious piece of french bread, there's even some places that'll do a fried & bbq sauced on a po'boy. 

Now I couldn't figure out the sense of battered and fried seafood going on a sandwich.  I love fried seafood - I'll eat anything from the ocean fried even creepy bioluminesent fishies - but the connect didn't work for me.  A sausage po'boy is good but seems to be lacking (especially when I begin to think of sausage and pepper grinders).  So my mind got to workin' and the next time I went to Delacroix's I ordered a blackened shrimp and sausage sandwich.  The waiter looked at me weird but said sure, why not.  It came out and I devoured it.  It works folks and over time I have made some variations on the one I order.  Now that I have some good rolls (and 26/30 shrimp were on sale) I have decided to make them at home and pass the results on to you fine readers.
  • As always my recipes are only suggestions, if you don't like onions don't use onions, etc.  I know that sounds silly but I've heard of people not trying dishes because they don't like an ingredient.
This is only for one sandwich - 12" roll/baguette.  Granted this is an Abuelita Joshua sized sandwich, you daintier folks could make two 6" sandwiches or just halve the recipe and buy smaller rolls.

  • 12 Extra Large Shrimp 26/30 - frozen or fresh...whatever...I prefer uncooked and shell on.
  • Sausage - eye ball the quanity you want.  I usually go for links of smoked sausage and cut off a quite a few good sized chunks.  I loves the sausage.
  • 1/2 an onion.  Sliced thin.
  • 1/2 a red pepper.
  • 2 tbsp butter unsalted
  • 1 jalapeno (or the like) sliced thin.
  • A punch of salt and pepper
  • 1 tbsp of Abuelita Joshua's Favorite Spice Mix
  • 2 tbsp minced garlic or shallots
Get all your prep work done.  Start heating your cast iron skillet on the range.  If you don't have a cast iron skillet then go buy one, they are cheap (Lodge skillets are awesome and less than $25).  Heat your cast iron skillet and remember to put on an oven mitt or some such thing before touch the handle.  If you forget, you'll never do that again.

Melt the butter in the pan, add minced garlic (or shallots), add sausage.  Brown the sausage, remove sausage from pan and place on a paper towel to remove excess grease.  Now sautee your onions and peppers, add Spice Mix, when the veggies are just starting to sweat toss in the shrimp (shells removed).  Return sausage to the mix.  Stir.  The shrimp should be almost done after about two minutes so take the pan off the heat and let the residual heat from the cast iron finish the job for you.  Prep your bread, put contents of pan on bread, consume.

You could also and are encouraged to toast the bread in the oven.  As far as condiments go I really don't think the sandwich needs any but I do like a remoulade now and then. 

Additionally, if you really wanted to be a bad ass you could grill the shrimp and the sausage but alas all I have is a cast iron skillet.

And there we have it.  Good cooking to you fine folks.

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